Today I read writings from 3 different sources, none of whom seem connected in any real or virtual way. I actually read several others, as well, but these three stand out for the purpose of this post. So what made them special? Allow me to explain… lol! (Lame intro, I know, but mind currently “blown”…)
What makes them (and their posts) unique is that they seem to be talking about 3 very different topics, and yet…
And yet, they feel exactly the same!
That’s right, they feel the same. The words are different. The topics are different. The native languages are different, though I read them all in English. The concepts, ideas, purposes – all different. Absolutely no logical connection between them at all…
But when I close my eyes and let the words flow through my mind, something truly remarkable occurs – a picture begins to form; the words themselves shift and shape themselves into a vessel, like a vase or a bottle, decorated with a unique pattern. And as I watch this happen, each “vessel” slides easily over the others, outlines matching perfectly, and settles in, until the unique decorative patterns merge to form a coherent design!
Three patterns, superimposed, to create one complete (?) image…
I examine that image more closely. I realize it looks, smells, tastes, feels coherent, complete and whole, and that those sensations remain exactly the same, even when I pull the individual layers apart again; each layer consists of exactly the same look, smell, taste and feeling as the other two, which is why (or a result of) my mind tagging them together as “same,” even when they are obviously quite “different,” as well…
Other voices rise to the surface. Other sources. Other words, and messages. All different…, but still.
Connections made, distances crossed in no Time at all. Coming together, coalescing, synchronizing, meshing. Then merging. All unrelated, and yet…
And yet… exactly the same!!! The same image, smell, taste, feel; the same pattern, the same vessel forms…
And neurons begin to fire in both my and My mind, connections being made before questions can be asked; a full scale cascade beginning to form, though in this case, a multidimensional one. And in the background the echo of a memory, a conversation once shared and written down, relevant again now…
The Scene: this timeline, 1994. The location, the “Prologue” to Adventures in Otherhood; the Gathering (copyright 1994, by Lisa R. Palmer, self-published).
Thursday, August 4th, 1994:
How to begin? Perhaps a Tarot card will help – to set the mood or direct the flow?
The Page of Cups. But what does it mean?
Well in traditional interpretations the four pages are often called the “four children” of
the Tarot. They represent a form of completion, a “final stage,” the manifestation of energy into
form. Hmm… Interesting choice.
The Page of Cups is often seen as a princess. She is called the “Princess of the Waters
and the Lotus.”
In more mundane terms, the Page of Cups is said to be a contemplative person, drawn to
beauty and truth. This page gives freely of his/her knowledge, but only when asked. And, being
cups, this page is one of deep feeling and great foresight.
Or, less specifically, the card can be interpreted as a real person, male or female, who
makes the querent feel good, or has a positive influence on one’s emotions or emotional state. All
in all, an interesting card to choose now…
But why now?… It seems vaguely familiar somehow… Perhaps it sets up this book?
Perhaps it is a promise of what is to come? Or maybe a warning?… Perhaps it is only a card…
I suppose it could represent Lea – “Princess of the Waters and the Lotus”… Or it could be
me – “a contemplative person drawn to beauty and truth”… It could even be Bruce – “someone
who makes one feel good or has a positive influence on one’s emotions or emotional state”…
I suppose it could be less personal, too. Maybe it represents the Sacred Child to be borne
of the upcoming Sacred Marriage?… Or maybe it represents one of the “Four Children” who will
lead us into the New Age? Of course, that story requires that the Four Children must first be
brought together in the House of Elders… So maybe not, huh?…
I don’t know… Perhaps it is all of these people. Maybe all of us? Perhaps it is not.
Perhaps it is only a card…
Bruce: Why do you use these tools, Li – cards, Runes, stones? Why do you bother if you don’t
believe what they reveal?
L: Because they open my mind to possibilities, Bruce. And possibilities are the gateways to the
Steve: To the future Li?! What’s wrong with the “right now”? You know, if you spent less time in
the future and more time in the present, you might actually accomplish something someday. What
do you think?… Maybe?
Carol: To hell with the future! What about the past?! The woman can’t drag herself out of the
past – real or imagined! It’s no wonder she can’t create a future or deal with a present!
L: Are you all finished now?…
(When no one responds, she continues…)
Good! Then hear what I have to say to you…
Maybe I do spend too much time mulling over the past – real or imagined. (Smiling to
herself…) And maybe I am too interested in the future. But time, as such, is irrelevant. All the
events I consider exist NOW, at the moment of consideration and beyond. To accuse me of being
“out of time” is ridiculous, since time cannot contain Truth, only limit It. Perhaps more accurate
to accuse me of being “out of body,” “out of form.” Therein lies the real obstacle to physical
I choose to deal in thought-forms, ideas, potential. Whatever else there is in the world, it
is what exists within me that I fancy. It is the worlds within that interest me, motivate me, inspire me. For within “me” is Everything, All-That-Is, or -Was, or -Will-Be. Is-ness is the key to
understanding “me.” Is-ness within…
Steve: That’s nonsense, Li! It means nothing!
L: Perhaps. But Nothing-ness is included in All-That-Is, and is, therefore, equally valid.
Carol: Oh great! Mind games! Word games! Don’t you ever play real games, Li?
Bruce: C’mon, gang, give her a break! If you think about it, what she says makes sense, in a non-
sense sort of way. It’s a paradox.
Carol: And what good is paradox, pray tell? It reveals nothing of value. It means nothing. It
cannot be eaten, savored, used. It is useless.
L: Paradox reveals patterns, Carol, and patterns are the basis of reality. You are a “pattern,” one
that can be grasped through Paradox.
Carol: Oh, come on, Li… How do you figure?
L: It’s simple, really. We like to think in straight lines, Carol, with beginnings and endings,
capitals and periods, commas and consonants. But, while reality can be structured in those terms,
it is not complete as such.
Reality is round, spherical: it is whole. Pick any two points on the surface, say you and
that tree over there, and you can connect them with a straight line: You are human, the tree is not:
the tree exists, but separate from you. You are not a tree, the tree; the tree is not you, or any
But if you look more closely at that line you have drawn, you will see that it’s not exactly
straight; at least it is not flat. The surface of the sphere requires that the line bends, rolls, ripples
around the surface, the edge. What was once clearly hard and straight is now curved and soft – at
the same time! That is a Paradox, Carol. And all reality is paradoxical in that way.
When you look beyond that line you have drawn, you begin to grasp that there is much,
much more than what you have chosen to see. Here you sit on the surface drawing lines, making
conclusions, and calling them real and natural laws. Which they are.
But below the surface is a whole universe, complete in and of itself, with its own laws.
Draw a line between two points on the surface, but go through the center of the sphere, rather
than around its perimeter. What do you have then, Carol?
(There is no response…)
Bruce: (Thoughtfully…) You have two worlds, two universes, co-existing at the same time?
L: (Nodding…) Yet each equally of the whole…
Steve: Each a mirror reflection of the other!
L: (Agreeing…) And the line you have drawn is really a circle, a disk that bisects the whole, from
an infinite number of positions!
Steve: And if you draw another line like the first?
Bruce: You’d have four worlds co-existing within the whole!
L: (Laughing…) Well, that depends on whether you leave the first one in place or not… And
really, it gets more complicated than that, because each disk revolves around the whole, creating
any number of bisections, crossing and mingling with each other. And when you place a second
or third or even fourth disk, at different angles, you create a many-faceted jewel within the
sphere, reflecting the whole spectrum of color and sound and feeling…
Bruce: Then how do you keep track of all the worlds thus created?
Steve: I think the first question should be, can you?
L: Only by staying in the Center.
(The others just stare at her in disbelief…)
(Laughing…) OK, draw the picture we’ve been describing, and tell me what you see…
(The two men scribble in the dirt together, talking, conferring, erasing, agreeing…)
Bruce: (Nodding…) Done!
L: Okay, now tell me – what do you see?
Steve: A mess?
L: Besides that!
Bruce: A star? Within a sphere?
L: Yes! And what does that picture reveal?
Bruce: (Smiling…) That you can contain a star within a sphere?
Steve: No! That you can create a sphere by containing a star!
(They all laugh together… except Carol…)
Carol: All disks intersect at a common point – the Center.
(All eyes turn toward Carol…)
L: (Softly…) Yes… All reality merges at the Center.
(A long moment of silence ensues as each person contemplates this discovery…)
Steve: (Thoughtfully…) So, we exist at the Center?
L: All exists at the Center… God exists at the Center. “I” exist at the Center…
Bruce: So the goal is to find the Center?
Carol: (Sharply…) This is ridiculous, Li! I just don’t buy it!
L: (Patiently…) Look again at the picture you have drawn. What else does it reveal?
(A long pause to think…)
Steve: All energy moves inward toward the Center?
Bruce: Or outwards from the Center, man. I mean, how can you tell?
Carol: Leave me out of this, Li! I’d rather stay on the surface with my straight lines and easy
L: (Laughing…) Okay, as you wish… But then, that much is true anyway.
What each of you has seen is equally valid, equally real.
(The others look at her with doubt, suspicion, sarcasm…)
No, really! I mean it! Let me explain…
Steve, all energy does gravitate toward the Center – all experience is internalized.
And, Bruce, all energy moves outward from the Center as well – intention manifests into
action and experience…
Carol: (Sarcastically…) Which is then internalized, right?
L: The movement is simultaneous, co-existing within the same moment – the NOW.
Bruce: Then how can it be movement, Li? Movement requires time: something exists here, then
there, then further down the line. That is the nature of movement.
L: Yes, another Paradox. But it, too, can be unraveled, providing you will accept the paradox it
produces – the very same one we started with!
Steve: (Confused…) Huh?
L: The pattern of the Paradox is the figure-8, or perhaps more accurately, a figure-8 cross, like
this: (She draws a figure in the dirt…) We can explain each Paradox (the co-existence of
contradictory “facts” – a figure-8), by taking a path perpendicular to the first. But that path is
itself a figure-8, a continuum of opposites in mutual support of one another. Solvable only by
returning to our original paradox.
Steve: (Only half joking…) No “degrees” this time, Li, or co-existing infinities?
L: (Laughing…) Of course there are! But the only way to grasp them is to look at the whole, and
here we are trying to break it down, to analyze it.
Bruce: Which makes it other than it really is!
L: Which makes what it really is Other, which it cannot be!
(They all laugh together…)
Carol: Now this is a perfect example of what I mean! All this talk is useless; it has accomplished
nothing but to confuse us! Show me how any of this matters, Li, and I’ll begin to listen.
Otherwise, I have better things to do – with the emphasis on “do”!
Steve: She has a point, Li. How can we use this?
L: You already are…
Bruce: (Laughing at Steve’s shocked expression…) You knew she would say that! What else
could she say?
(Giving them time to laugh, to relax, to regain balance and sense, L waits. Finally, she says…)
L: Indeed, what else could I say? To analyze, to understand, to visualize, to diagram… To explain.
All this to comprehend what can only be experienced.
How do we know what we know, my friends? How do we come to know what is
(A long pause before continuing…)
We experience – on the surface, deep within, through infinite levels and co-existing
universes. Yet all within the same Whole, all framed and bounded by the same existence. Free to
move without restraint within that existence. And all of it real: All of It – Real. Even what is
imagined or imagined to be real… That is the only way…
Suppose each of us is a sphere, containing within our unique existence the whole we have
been discussing – surface, Center and what is Between. Can you visualize that – you a whole
universe unto your Self?
Yet here we are together, in conversation, interacting with one another. Separate spheres,
separate universes, bumping into one another, merging, separating, dancing in the vastness of
Empty-ness between us, clinging to the slender thread that unites us, that allows us to meet here
like this, to “be” here like this, with each other, as Other…?
Discover what it is that unites us and you will have the answer to how this can be
(Blank stares meet her emotional entreaty…)
Okay, my friends…
(Nodding resignedly…) Give it time, then, since it is yours to give. Let these questions
roll about in the sphere that is you and see what patterns are created. Examine the currents the
questions create. Ride the waves of thought and form thus created, and give yourself over to the
swirls, the eddies, the whirlpools of your experience, your emotions. Be who you are, become
what you seek. Meet me when you are through.
When your time has come, and passed, when you have sifted through the ashes of what
was, through the mist of what will be, and found your self present again, I will meet you.
On the Other Side…
And the Adventure ends with a double-sided mat outside an unremarkable door which reads:
“Welcome to… the Other Side”